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Quickie Rains to Fall Until Sunday

Times Staff Writer

Southern California will probably have a few more showers today and Saturday, the forecasters say, but things should be looking brighter by Sunday.

As a damp cold front skipped through Thursday on its way to Arizona and New Mexico, meteorologist Dave Beusterien of WeatherData Inc., which provides forecasts for The Times, said none of the current quickie storms are very wet.

There is a good chance of some significant rain Saturday night, Beusterien said, when some moisture from the North Pacific is expected to slide down the California coast.

“That should break up by Sunday morning,” he said. “Then I think we’ll be through with this system for a while.”

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The latest rain, which pattered into the area Thursday morning, was the result of a cold front moving through northern sections of the Southland and an upper-level storm system just off the coast of Northern California, he said.

In Orange County, Santa Ana had 0.03 of an inch of rain Thursday, while San Juan Capistrano recorded 0.04 of an inch and Newport Beach registered only a trace, according to the National Weather Service.

The mercury dipped to 39 degrees in San Juan Capistrano, 45 in Santa Ana and 50 in Newport Beach. Daytime highs ranged from the upper 50s to the low 60s.

There was wind and snow in Southland mountains and the snow level was expected to move down to 2,500 feet by this morning. Snow accumulations of 8 to 12 inches were expected above the 7,000-foot level in the northern ranges and up to 8 inches in the southern ranges.

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Motorists were being warned to carry chains in the mountains. Windblown snow, the forecasters said, could make the roads hazardous.

By Sunday, the Southland should be fair and slightly warmer, according to the National Weather Service, which said coastal high temperatures will be 64 to 68 with local gusty north-to-northwest winds decreasing Monday.

Highs at Southern California mountain resorts are expected to be 38 to 45 over the weekend. They should be from 52 to 60 degrees in the high deserts and 64 to 70 in the low deserts.

Times staff writer Jim Carlton contributed to this story.

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